Waves of Justice Churches’ Toolkit

Download a printable version of the
Waves of Justice toolkit

This section of the website is designed to help churches, small groups or individuals do justice work. The Waves of Justice defines the steps needed to start, build, and grow an effective justice ministry. There is no one-size-fits-all method of doing justice ministry, but use this template to help navigate the crucial steps to effectively make positive changes in your community. If you have already started doing justice work then wherever you are on your journey to justice, we hope this guide will help you take the next steps.

The Mercy and Justice Team of the Great Plains Conference of the United Methodist Church put this toolkit together. Most of the justice ministry work in Kansas and Nebraska is being done in the larger urban centers led by professional, well organized and well-funded community organizers. There is a need and a desire from smaller communities and rural churches to learn how to be involved in effective justice ministry in their areas at the grassroots level. While the underlying principles of justice ministry are the same in any setting, it is with these smaller communities in mind that this toolkit was created.

The history of justice work shows that the fight to achieve justice is only part of the story. An equal part is the fight to hold onto the gains already made because there are always those who want to undo the work that has been done.

While eliminating an injustice is the ultimate goal of all justice ministries, achieving that goal is work that will often take generations. We must see our work as following others who have gone before us, joining others who are with us, and preparing the way for others who will follow us.

It is a goal of the Mercy and Justice Team that in the Great Plains Conference justice becomes as common as mercy.

How to Use This Toolkit

The outline for the Waves of Justice toolkit is set up to follow the steps listed in the Waves of Justice brochure designed by the Mercy and Justice Team. In the first wave you will learn what justice is, how we are called to do justice, and make the commitment to doing justice. In the second wave you will learn to discern and define your vision of the justice ministry and how to develop a workable plan to achieve your vision. In the third wave you will put your plan into action and evaluate the outcome of your action.

Simply click on a link below to start or continue your journey.

1st Wave
2nd Wave
3rd Wave


It is the hope of the Mercy and Justice Team that you will continue justice ministry with new visions, plans and actions. As you complete the third wave and want to continue there are a few options.

  • You could keep the same vision and work on a new problem to address that vision. In that case you would circle back to the Plan step and proceed from there.
  • You could decide to work from a different vision this time. In that case you would circle back to the Vision step and proceed from there.
  • Or, you might want to go back to the first wave to review and to remind yourselves what justice ministry is and why you are called to do it. This is most important when new members have joined your group.


Please feel free to reach out to the Mercy and Justice’s Waves of Justice Subteam if you have any questions during your journey to justice. Also, if you have any comments or suggestions about this toolkit, we would like to hear from you.

Let us know when you begin your journey to justice. We want to monitor the progress of any justice ministry in the Great Plains Conference and to know what groups are working on which issues. As we grow a justice network, we can learn from and encourage one another. When we join our voices together we can accelerate the movement toward justice in our communities.

Our future plans include providing training and coaching for churches doing justice ministry.

Our contact email is waves_of_justice@greatplainsumc.org.